love field apartments

Image: Google Maps

Developers have their eye on the Love Field-Medical District areas, and a new residential community is underway.

Fairfield Residential recently purchased about six acres near Denton Drive and Inwood Road for a 350-unit apartment complex. Fairfield has ten residential developments in the DFW area, including the upscale 21 Forty Medical DistrictCantabria at Turtle Creek, and Rienzi at Turtle Creek.

Two blocks just south of Love Field along Inwood Road and Sadler Circle will be cleared for the as-yet-unnamed project. The land is currently occupied by a handful of commercial buildings. Demolition is slated for completion by the end of 2015.

Development in this area is gaining momentum, driven in part by the expanded air services at Love Field, as well as growth of the Medical District, like the Parkland expansion. The location is a big factor, too.

“That little pocket of real estate is booming right now—I actually showed a property there this morning to a woman who works at Parkland,” said David Maez, Broker, Creative Director, and Co-Founder of Vivo Realty. “It’s a great location for potential tenants, close to Uptown, downtown, and the airport, as well as the Tollway for people that need to commute up north.”

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Photo: StreetLights

The Case Building will be the first residential highrise in Deep Ellum. Photo: StreetLights

People have been calling Deep Ellum home since the late 1800s, and the historic district in downtown Dallas is entering a new era with its first residential highrise.

The 17-story, 337-unit Case Building will be the largest new real estate project ever built in Deep Ellum, located near Hall and Main streets, just south of Baylor Medical Center. Dallas-based Westdale Properties and StreetLights Residential are teaming up to develop the property.

“Deep Ellum is known for its rich art and music scene. The ability for residents to walk or bike to local galleries, music venues, restaurants, and shops fits well with Streetlights’ vision of a neighborhood-friendly urban development,” said StreetLights CEO Doug Chesnut in a statement. “The population in this area continues to grow, and StreetLights is excited to provide a building inspired by the architecture and style of Deep Ellum for this expanding community.”

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Gabriel Barbier-Mueller

The Barbier-Mueller family, from L to R: Alexis Barbier-Mueller, Niña Barbier-Mueller Tollett, Gabriel Barbier-Mueller, Ann Barbier-Mueller, and Oliver Barbier-Mueller at the the Samurai Collection traveling exhibition in Quebec City. All photos: Gabriel Barbier-Mueller

Many diners at Saint Ann Restaurant & Bar and passers by admire the Virgin de Guadalupe monument standing outside, a tile-and-brick structure that murmurs the history of the area.

This Harwood Avenue location was Dallas’ first school for Hispanic children, the 1927 St. Ann’s school house. It was located in the heart of Little Mexico, in what is now the Harwood District of Uptown, the signature development of Gabriel Barbier-Mueller, Founder and CEO of Harwood International.

After buying the historic schoolhouse, Barbier-Mueller’s company brought in an art preservationist to refurbish the tile mural of Our Lady of Guadalupe. They kept the original brick school building and transformed the interior into a sophisticated-yet-comfortable eatery in 2010. The second level houses The Ann and Gabriel Barbier-Mueller Museum: The Samurai Collection, an assemblage of samurai armor and related objects that is one of the largest and most complete in the world. Outside, the patio is one of the biggest and most lovely in the city.

This is just a tiny part of the Harwood empire, which spans the globe and has offices and developments in select parts of Dallas, Beverly Hills, Sunnyvale’s Gold Coast, Geneva, London’s West End, Paris, and Zurich’s Golden Triangle. But it speaks to Barbier-Mueller’s vision and European sensibilities when it comes to his work.

It’s not “out with the old, in with the new,” but rather a reimagining of space, with a focus on robust capital investment, energy conservation, leading-edge technology, green spaces, and designs that are built to stand the test of time.

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Robert Raymond

Photo: Michael Palumbo

In our ongoing series, Interview with an Architect, we speak with leading voices in the North Texas architecture community and learn about their work, development issues in our community, and good design practices and principals (you can read the last one here).

Robert Raymond

Robert Raymond

Robert W. Raymond, AIA, moved to Dallas in 1981 after completing his Masters in Architecture at the University of Michigan. He has never lived more than a few blocks from White Rock Lake in East Dallas, where he built his family’s home and made the transition to residential architecture in 2000.

“The house turned out great and my wife and daughters are still speaking to me,” he said.

With his firm, Raymond Design, he has built houses in neighborhoods ranging from Preston Hollow and the Peninsula, to Richardson and Southlake.

He was named Young Architect of the Year in 1989 by the Dallas chapter of the American Institute of Architecture, served on the board of trustees of the Dallas Architectural Foundation from 2004 to 2006, and has served on the board of trustees of the White Rock Lake Conservancy from 2008 to present.

CandysDirt: You spent 20 years working on big buildings, like hotels and hospitals, moving into residential design in 2000 by designing and building your family house. What appeals to you about residential architecture?

Rob Raymond: There are two main reasons. First, the ability to work from beginning to end on a project, from the initial concept to final construction.

Second, and most rewarding, is working so closely with the client on projects that are near and dear to them. With corporate clients building hotels or hospitals, it’s a business transaction and commercial architecture, in a big firm, is more specialized and compartmentalized. You rarely get the chance to go from inception of idea to ribbon cutting.

With residential architecture, I’m usually working with couples and I joke that it’s part residential architecture and part marriage counseling. It’s fun to get to know people, understand them, and connect with them.

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The Legacy West development in Frisco, designed by Ross Conway and his team at Gensler. All photos and renderings: Ross Conway

The Legacy West development in Frisco, designed by Ross Conway and his team at Gensler. All photos and renderings: Ross Conway

In our ongoing series, Interview with an Architect, we speak with leading voices in the North Texas architecture community and learn about their work, development issues in our community, and good design practices and principals (you can read the last one here).

Ross Conway

Ross Conway

Ross Conway, AIA, LEED AP, is Senior Associate and Design Director in the Lifestyle Studio at Gensler’s Dallas offices, where he has worked for almost 14 years.

His portfolio includes big names like the Dallas Cowboys Headquarters (The Star) in Frisco, the Legacy West addition in Frisco, Preston Hollow Village, The Shops at Park Lane, The Gate in Frisco, The Music Factory in Irving, and the Brazos Riverfront in Waco.

One of his current tasks is the $100-million Bishop Arts redevelopment in North Oak Cliff, an enterprise he calls “a once-in-a-career project for me.”

Conway grew up in Arlington and earned a Masters degree in Architecture from the University of Texas at Arlington. He and his wife recently built a house in Urban Reserve, a Lake Highlands neighborhood of 50 modern, single-family homes, designed by a select group of regionally and nationally recognized architects, including Evan Beattie, the first person we interviewed for this series. He’s also on the architectural review committee there.

CandysDirt: Where are you with the Bishop Arts redevelopment?

Ross Conway: We will finish the design in next few months, and [developer] Exxir Capital wants to start construction in August for phase one. We want to gradually grow it over a two-year process, getting it built out to let people get used to it, and to take into consideration people’s concerns.

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Cliff Welch

Cliff Welch’s E. Lake Highlands Drive home featured in next weekend’s tenth annual White Rock Home Tour. Photos of house: Eric Homes

In our ongoing series, Interview with an Architect, we speak with leading voices in the North Texas architecture community and learn about their work, development issues in our community, and good design practices and principals (you can read the first one here and the second one here).

Cliff Welch

Photo: Cliff Welch

Cliff Welch, AIA, is a Dallas-based architect who champions modern architecture and designs with inspiration drawn from modern architecture of the last century.

His background includes working with the late Dallas modernist Bud Oglesby, later becoming a principal at Design International before starting his own firm, Welch Architecture, in January 2000.

One of his designs, located on East Lake Highlands Drive, is featured on the 10th annual White Rock Home Tour April 25-26. When the tour started in 2005, it showcased midcentury modern homes in the White Rock area; it has now expanded to include new construction, as well.

Welch earned his Bachelor of Science in Architecture and Master of Architecture from the University of Texas at Arlington. His work has received multiple Merit and Citation Awards from the Dallas Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), as well as their coveted Young Architect of the Year award. He has also earned honors from Preservation Dallas, the Texas Society of Architects, D Home magazine, and the AIA.

Welch is the past president of the Dallas Architectural Foundation and taught graduate-level architecture classes at UT Arlington. He is a past executive board member of the Dallas Chapter AIA, also serving two years as their Commissioner of Design, and has chaired multiple chapter events, including various home tours. He also served as a design awards juror for other chapters around the state.

Welch’s White Rock Home Tour house’s elegant simplicity and open spaces incorporate modern design to create an exception environment.

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Toyota groundbreaking 1.20.2015

At a ceremonial groundbreaking Tuesday, about 100 attendees watched as a Toyota Tundra truck moved the first shovels of dirt for the Japanese automaker’s $350 million North American headquarters in West Plano.

The relocation of Toyota Motor Corp.’s $350 million headquarters to Plano from Southern California was North Texas’ biggest corporate relocation of 2014. By the time construction is complete in late 2016 or early 2017, some 4,000 jobs will have been created at or moved to the 100-acre campus, including transfers from California, New York, and other states. Plus, for every one of the jobs Toyota brings to Plano, four more jobs will be created.

That’s a colossal business opportunity for Collin County realtors, who are getting ready to be a part of finding homes for those who need it. The company’s 1 million-square-foot campus is located off the Sam Rayburn Tollway and Legacy Drive in Plano, and many of the corporate employees will want to live close to that area.

“We’re all gearing up for it and we are ready to take them on, whether they’re going into Plano or Uptown,” said David Maez, broker and co-owner at VIVO Realty. “Another thing we’re going to see is all the corporations that do business with Toyota moving to the area. You’ll be adding all those other jobs and people to the area.” Jump to read more!

Toyota Executives groundbreaking

Toyota CEO Jim Lentz, President and CEO Michael Groff, and Plano Mayor Harry LaRosiliere (center). All photos courtesy of WFAA-TV.

 

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Here’s more proof of how well home builders are doing in some parts of the country, namely, of course, Texas: a Coral Gables residential developer recently bought up a super successful builder of residential communities, many in Texas.

In early May, SouthStar Communities paid $29 million big ones to buy Bluegreen Communities, which has created 11 residential developments in the Southeast and Texas. Close to home, Bluegreen owned the Lake Ridge development on Joe Pool Lake and the Reserve at Sugar Tree near Weatherford, as well as beautiful Vintage Oaks down in New Braunfels, Texas, which I have had the pleasure of visiting. Very impressed with the homes and the vineyard which is a part of the property development. SouthStar, which has been in business since 1999, is led by CEO J. Larry Rutherford, who has been on Bluegreen’s board of directors for 14 years. Boca Raton-based Bluegreen Corp. Bluegreen’s primary business is vacation resorts, such as time-shares. I’m told SouthStar will not be involved in timeshares.

Bluegreen also developed, then sold,  one of my favorite developments north of town, the lush Bridges at Preston Crossing. It’s a 1580 acre former private horse farm that Bluegreen turned into a living community with an 18 hole golf course, a clubhouse, pool, 24 acre fishing lake, greenbelts and forests all in Gunter, north of Prosper.  Here’s a huge plus for The Bridges: a first class equestrian center for all homeowners right in your backyard.



Once a playground for international polo players and Dallas’ elite, The Bridges Equestrian Center is now the perfect paradise for horse and riding enthusiasts.  Bluegreen sold The Bridges to Mehrdad Moayedi, than man developing out around Champ D’Or, aka Saint Stoneleigh — the man who snapped up the Stoneleigh Residences out of bankruptcy. I hear the ranch house, once the site of many a Cattle Barons bash, has been snapped up by a prominent Dallas family. BTW: coolio party at the Stoneleigh penthouse this Wednesday, so stay tuned for deets.

Near Cedar Hill, Lake Ridge is the Dallas answer to the Hill Country. Though at one time it held the unsavory title of the foreclosure capital of North Texas, LakeRidge is actually one of housing’s most complete success stories as the foreclosed inventory was absorbed.

“My wife is from Austin,” says former pro player Dexter Coakley. “Lake Ridge reminds me of those Hill Country hills and landscapes you don’t get in flatter parts of Texas. Plus there are bigger lots, so you can enjoy all your toys.”

The lots are huge in Lake Ridge, most averaging one to three acres per homestead. And the homes are large, too, with a minimum square footage requirement of 2200. Most are far larger: one retired couple built an 18,000 square foot home. Sam Putney’s Lake Ridge home, before he sold it, weighed in at 9202 square feet. (And that home was loaded!)

That SouthStar liked the props enough to buy is further evidence that these areas have turned the corner. Stay tuned for more news from these peeps: as they say in Hollywood, this is only the beginning.